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Medieval and Classical Library

Troilus and Criseyde: Book III
by Geoffrey Chaucer

Online Medieval and Classical Library Release #5

The following electronic text is based on that edition of the poem published in THE COMPLETE WORKS OF GEOFFREY CHAUCER, ed. W.W. Skeat (Oxford, 1900). This text is in the PUBLIC DOMAIN.

This electronic edition was edited, proofed, and prepared by Douglas B. Killings (DeTroyes@AOL.COM), March 1995, based upon a previous e-text of unknown origin. Additional assistance provided by Diane M. Brendan.

BOOK III

Incipit prohemium tercii libri.

1      O blisful light of whiche the bemes clere
       Adorneth al the thridde hevene faire!
       O sonnes lief, O Ioves doughter dere,
       Plesaunce of love, O goodly debonaire,
5      In gentil hertes ay redy to repaire!
       O verray cause of hele and of gladnesse,
       Y-heried be thy might and thy goodnesse!

       In hevene and helle, in erthe and salte see
       Is felt thy might, if that I wel descerne;
10     As man, brid, best, fish, herbe and grene tree
       Thee fele in tymes with vapour eterne.
       God loveth, and to love wol nought werne;
       And in this world no lyves creature,
       With-outen love, is worth, or may endure.

15     Ye Ioves first to thilke effectes glade,
       Thorugh which that thinges liven alle and be,
       Comeveden, and amorous him made
       On mortal thing, and as yow list, ay ye
       Yeve him in love ese or adversitee;
20     And in a thousand formes doun him sente
       For love in erthe, and whom yow liste, he hente.

       Ye fierse Mars apeysen of his ire,
       And, as yow list, ye maken hertes digne;
       Algates, hem that ye wol sette a-fyre,
25     They dreden shame, and vices they resigne;
       Ye do hem corteys be, fresshe and benigne,
       And hye or lowe, after a wight entendeth;
       The Ioyes that he hath, your might him sendeth.

       Ye holden regne and hous in unitee;
30     Ye soothfast cause of frendship been also;
       Ye knowe al thilke covered qualitee
       Of thinges which that folk on wondren so,
       Whan they can not construe how it may io,
       She loveth him, or why he loveth here;
35     As why this fish, and nought that, comth to were.

       Ye folk a lawe han set in universe,
       And this knowe I by hem that loveres be,
       That who-so stryveth with yow hath the werse:
       Now, lady bright, for thy benignitee,
40     At reverence of hem that serven thee,
       Whos clerk I am, so techeth me devyse
       Som Ioye of that is felt in thy servyse.

       Ye in my naked herte sentement
       Inhelde, and do me shewe of thy swetnesse. --
45     Caliope, thy vois be now present,
       For now is nede; sestow not my destresse,
       How I mot telle anon-right the gladnesse
       Of Troilus, to Venus heryinge?
       To which gladnes, who nede hath, god him bringe!

Explicit prohemium Tercii Libri.


Incipit Liber Tercius.


50     Lay al this mene whyle Troilus,
       Recordinge his lessoun in this manere,
       `Ma fey!' thought he, `Thus wole I seye and thus;
       Thus wole I pleyne unto my lady dere;
       That word is good, and this shal be my chere;
55     This nil I not foryeten in no wyse.'
       God leve him werken as he can devyse!

       And, lord, so that his herte gan to quappe,
       Heringe hir come, and shorte for to syke!
       And Pandarus, that ledde hir by the lappe,
60     Com ner, and gan in at the curtin pyke,
       And seyde, `God do bote on alle syke!
       See, who is here yow comen to visyte;
       Lo, here is she that is your deeth to wyte.'

       Ther-with it semed as he wepte almost;
65     `A ha,' quod Troilus so rewfully,
       `Wher me be wo, O mighty god, thow wost!
       Who is al there? I se nought trewely.'
       `Sire,' quod Criseyde, `it is Pandare and I.'
       `Ye, swete herte? Allas, I may nought ryse
70     To knele, and do yow honour in som wyse.'

       And dressede him upward, and she right tho
       Gan bothe here hondes softe upon him leye,
       `O, for the love of god, do ye not so
       To me,' quod she, `Ey! What is this to seye?
75     Sire, come am I to yow for causes tweye;
       First, yow to thonke, and of your lordshipe eke
       Continuance I wolde yow biseke.'

       This Troilus, that herde his lady preye
       Of lordship him, wex neither quik ne deed,
80     Ne mighte a word for shame to it seye,
       Al-though men sholde smyten of his heed.
       But lord, so he wex sodeinliche reed,
       And sire, his lesson, that he wende conne,
       To preyen hir, is thurgh his wit y-ronne.

85     Cryseyde al this aspyede wel y-nough,
       For she was wys, and lovede him never-the-lasse,
       Al nere he malapert, or made it tough,
       Or was to bold, to singe a fool a masse.
       But whan his shame gan somwhat to passe,
90     His resons, as I may my rymes holde,
       I yow wole telle, as techen bokes olde.

       In chaunged vois, right for his verray drede,
       Which vois eek quook, and ther-to his manere
       Goodly abayst, and now his hewes rede,
95     Now pale, un-to Criseyde, his lady dere,
       With look doun cast and humble yolden chere,
       Lo, the alderfirste word that him asterte
       Was, twyes, `Mercy, mercy, swete herte!'

       And stinte a whyl, and whan he mighte out-bringe,
100    The nexte word was, `God wot, for I have,
       As feyfully as I have had konninge,
       Ben youres, also god so my sowle save;
       And shal til that I, woful wight, be grave.
       And though I dar ne can un-to yow pleyne,
105    Y-wis, I suffre nought the lasse peyne.

       `Thus muche as now, O wommanliche wyf,
       I may out-bringe, and if this yow displese,
       That shal I wreke upon myn owne lyf
       Right sone, I trowe, and doon your herte an ese,
110    If with my deeth your herte I may apese.
       But sin that ye han herd me som-what seye,
       Now recche I never how sone that I deye.'

       Ther-with his manly sorwe to biholde,
       It mighte han maad an herte of stoon to rewe;
115    And Pandare weep as he to watre wolde,
       And poked ever his nece newe and newe,
       And seyde, `Wo bigon ben hertes trewe!
       For love of god, make of this thing an ende,
       Or slee us bothe at ones, er that ye wende.'

120    `I? What?' quod she, `By god and by my trouthe,
       I noot nought what ye wilne that I seye.'
       `I? What?' quod he, `That ye han on him routhe,
       For goddes love, and doth him nought to deye.'
       `Now thanne thus,' quod she, `I wolde him preye
125    To telle me the fyn of his entente;
       Yet wist I never wel what that he mente.'

       `What that I mene, O swete herte dere?'
       Quod Troilus, `O goodly, fresshe free!
       That, with the stremes of your eyen clere,
130    Ye wolde som-tyme freendly on me see,
       And thanne agreen that I may ben he,
       With-oute braunche of vyce on any wyse,
       In trouthe alwey to doon yow my servyse,

       `As to my lady right and chief resort,
135    With al my wit and al my diligence,
       And I to han, right as yow list, comfort,
       Under your yerde, egal to myn offence,
       As deeth, if that I breke your defence;
       And that ye deigne me so muche honoure,
140    Me to comaunden ought in any houre.

       `And I to ben your verray humble trewe,
       Secret, and in my paynes pacient,
       And ever-mo desire freshly newe,
       To serven, and been y-lyke ay diligent,
145    And, with good herte, al holly your talent
       Receyven wel, how sore that me smerte,
       Lo, this mene I, myn owene swete herte.'

       Quod Pandarus, `Lo, here an hard request,
       And resonable, a lady for to werne!
150    Now, nece myn, by natal Ioves fest,
       Were I a god, ye sholde sterve as yerne,
       That heren wel, this man wol no-thing yerne
       But your honour, and seen him almost sterve,
       And been so looth to suffren him yow serve.'

155    With that she gan hir eyen on him caste
       Ful esily, and ful debonairly,
       Avysing hir, and hyed not to faste
       With never a word, but seyde him softely,
       `Myn honour sauf, I wol wel trewely,
160    And in swich forme as he can now devyse,
       Receyven him fully to my servyse,

       `Biseching him, for goddes love, that he
       Wolde, in honour of trouthe and gentilesse,
       As I wel mene, eek mene wel to me,
165    And myn honour, with wit and besinesse
       Ay kepe; and if I may don him gladnesse,
       From hennes-forth, y-wis, I nil not feyne:
       Now beeth al hool; no lenger ye ne pleyne.

       `But nathelees, this warne I yow,' quod she,
170    `A kinges sone al-though ye be, y-wis,
       Ye shal na-more have soverainetee
       Of me in love, than right in that cas is;
       Ne I nil forbere, if that ye doon a-mis,
       To wrathen yow; and whyl that ye me serve,
175    Cherycen yow right after ye deserve.

       `And shortly, dere herte and al my knight,
       Beth glad, and draweth yow to lustinesse,
       And I shal trewely, with al my might,
       Your bittre tornen al in-to swetenesse.
180    If I be she that may yow do gladnesse,
       For every wo ye shal recovere a blisse';
       And him in armes took, and gan him kisse.

       Fil Pandarus on knees, and up his eyen
       To hevene threw, and held his hondes hye,
185    `Immortal god!' quod he, `That mayst nought dyen,
       Cupide I mene, of this mayst glorifye;
       And Venus, thou mayst maken melodye;
       With-outen hond, me semeth that in the towne,
       For this merveyle, I here ech belle sowne.

190    `But ho! No more as now of this matere,
       For-why this folk wol comen up anoon,
       That han the lettre red; lo, I hem here.
       But I coniure thee, Criseyde, and oon,
       And two, thou Troilus, whan thow mayst goon,
195    That at myn hous ye been at my warninge,
       For I ful wel shal shape youre cominge;

       `And eseth ther your hertes right y-nough;
       And lat see which of yow shal bere the belle
       To speke of love a-right!' ther-with he lough,
200    `For ther have ye a layser for to telle.'
       Quod Troilus, `How longe shal I dwelle
       Er this be doon?' Quod he, `Whan thou mayst ryse,
       This thing shal be right as I yow devyse.'

       With that Eleyne and also Deiphebus
205    Tho comen upward, right at the steyres ende;
       And Lord, so than gan grone Troilus,
       His brother and his suster for to blende.
       Quod Pandarus, `It tyme is that we wende;
       Tak, nece myn, your leve at alle three,
210    And lat hem speke, and cometh forth with me.'

       She took hir leve at hem ful thriftily,
       As she wel coude, and they hir reverence
       Un-to the fulle diden hardely,
       And speken wonder wel, in hir absence,
215    Of hir, in preysing of hir excellence,
       Hir governaunce, hir wit; and hir manere
       Commendeden, it Ioye was to here.

       Now lat hir wende un-to hir owne place,
       And torne we to Troilus a-yein,
220    That gan ful lightly of the lettre passe
       That Deiphebus hadde in the gardin seyn.
       And of Eleyne and him he wolde fayn
       Delivered been, and seyde that him leste
       To slepe, and after tales have reste.

225    Eleyne him kiste, and took hir leve blyve,
       Deiphebus eek, and hoom wente every wight;
       And Pandarus, as faste as he may dryve,
       To Troilus tho com, as lyne right;
       And on a paillet, al that glade night,
230    By Troilus he lay, with mery chere,
       To tale; and wel was hem they were y-fere.

       Whan every wight was voided but they two,
       And alle the dores were faste y-shette,
       To telle in short, with-oute wordes mo,
235    This Pandarus, with-outen any lette,
       Up roos, and on his beddes syde him sette,
       And gan to speken in a sobre wyse
       To Troilus, as I shal yow devyse:

       `Myn alderlevest lord, and brother dere,
240    God woot, and thou, that it sat me so sore,
       When I thee saw so languisshing to-yere,
       For love, of which thy wo wex alwey more;
       That I, with al my might and al my lore,
       Have ever sithen doon my bisinesse
245    To bringe thee to Ioye out of distresse,

       `And have it brought to swich plyt as thou wost,
       So that, thorugh me, thow stondest now in weye
       To fare wel, I seye it for no bost,
       And wostow which? For shame it is to seye,
250    For thee have I bigonne a gamen pleye
       Which that I never doon shal eft for other,
       Al-though he were a thousand fold my brother.

       `That is to seye, for thee am I bicomen,
       Bitwixen game and ernest, swich a mene
255    As maken wommen un-to men to comen;
       Al sey I nought, thou wost wel what I mene.
       For thee have I my nece, of vyces clene,
       So fully maad thy gentilesse triste,
       That al shal been right as thy-selve liste.

260    `But god, that al wot, take I to witnesse,
       That never I this for coveityse wroughte,
       But only for to abregge that distresse,
       For which wel nygh thou deydest, as me thoughte.
       But, gode brother, do now as thee oughte,
265    For goddes love, and kep hir out of blame,
       Sin thou art wys, and save alwey hir name.

       `For wel thou wost, the name as yet of here
       Among the peple, as who seyth, halwed is;
       For that man is unbore, I dar wel swere,
270    That ever wiste that she dide amis.
       But wo is me, that I, that cause al this,
       May thenken that she is my nece dere,
       And I hir eem, and trattor eek y-fere!

       `And were it wist that I, through myn engyn,
275    Hadde in my nece y-put this fantasye,
       To do thy lust, and hoolly to be thyn,
       Why, al the world up-on it wolde crye,
       And seye, that I the worste trecherye
       Dide in this cas, that ever was bigonne,
280    And she for-lost, and thou right nought y-wonne.

       `Wher-fore, er I wol ferther goon a pas,
       Yet eft I thee biseche and fully seye,
       That privetee go with us in this cas;
       That is to seye, that thou us never wreye;
285    And be nought wrooth, though I thee ofte preye
       To holden secree swich an heigh matere;
       For skilful is, thow wost wel, my preyere.

       `And thenk what wo ther hath bitid er this,
       For makinge of avantes, as men rede;
290    And what mischaunce in this world yet ther is,
       Fro day to day, right for that wikked dede;
       For which these wyse clerkes that ben dede
       Han ever yet proverbed to us yonge,
       That "Firste vertu is to kepe tonge."

295    `And, nere it that I wilne as now tabregge
       Diffusioun of speche, I coude almost
       A thousand olde stories thee alegge
       Of wommen lost, thorugh fals and foles bost;
       Proverbes canst thy-self y-nowe, and wost,
300    Ayeins that vyce, for to been a labbe,
       Al seyde men sooth as often as they gabbe.

       `O tonge, allas! So often here-biforn
       Hastow made many a lady bright of hewe
       Seyd, "Welawey! The day that I was born!"
305    And many a maydes sorwes for to newe;
       And, for the more part, al is untrewe
       That men of yelpe, and it were brought to preve;
       Of kinde non avauntour is to leve.

       `Avauntour and a lyere, al is on;
310    As thus: I pose, a womman graunte me
       Hir love, and seyth that other wol she non,
       And I am sworn to holden it secree,
       And after I go telle it two or three;
       Y-wis, I am avauntour at the leste,
315    And lyere, for I breke my biheste.

       `Now loke thanne, if they be nought to blame,
       Swich maner folk; what shal I clepe hem, what,
       That hem avaunte of wommen, and by name,
       That never yet bihighte hem this ne that,
320    Ne knewe hem more than myn olde hat?
       No wonder is, so god me sende hele,
       Though wommen drede with us men to dele.

       `I sey not this for no mistrust of yow,
       Ne for no wys man, but for foles nyce,
325    And for the harm that in the world is now,
       As wel for foly ofte as for malyce;
       For wel wot I, in wyse folk, that vyce
       No womman drat, if she be wel avysed;
       For wyse ben by foles harm chastysed.

330    `But now to purpos; leve brother dere,
       Have al this thing that I have seyd in minde,
       And keep thee clos, and be now of good chere,
       For at thy day thou shalt me trewe finde.
       I shal thy proces sette in swich a kinde,
335    And god to-forn, that it shall thee suffyse,
       For it shal been right as thou wolt devyse.

       `For wel I woot, thou menest wel, parde;
       Therfore I dar this fully undertake.
       Thou wost eek what thy lady graunted thee,
340    And day is set, the chartres up to make.
       Have now good night, I may no lenger wake;
       And bid for me, sin thou art now in blisse,
       That god me sende deeth or sone lisse.'

       Who mighte telle half the Ioye or feste
345    Which that the sowle of Troilus tho felte,
       Heringe theffect of Pandarus biheste?
       His olde wo, that made his herte swelte,
       Gan tho for Ioye wasten and to-melte,
       And al the richesse of his sykes sore
350    At ones fledde, he felte of hem no more.

       But right so as these holtes and these hayes,
       That han in winter dede been and dreye,
       Revesten hem in grene, whan that May is,
       Whan every lusty lyketh best to pleye;
355    Right in that selve wyse, sooth to seye,
       Wax sodeynliche his herte ful of Ioye,
       That gladder was ther never man in Troye.

       And gan his look on Pandarus up caste
       Ful sobrely, and frendly for to see,
360    And seyde, `Freend, in Aprille the laste,
       As wel thou wost, if it remembre thee,
       How neigh the deeth for wo thou founde me;
       And how thou didest al thy bisinesse
       To knowe of me the cause of my distresse.

365    `Thou wost how longe I it for-bar to seye
       To thee, that art the man that I best triste;
       And peril was it noon to thee by-wreye,
       That wiste I wel; but tel me, if thee liste,
       Sith I so looth was that thy-self it wiste,
370    How dorst I mo tellen of this matere,
       That quake now, and no wight may us here?

       `But natheles, by that god I thee swere,
       That, as him list, may al this world governe,
       And, if I lye, Achilles with his spere
375    Myn herte cleve, al were my lyf eterne,
       As I am mortal, if I late or yerne
       Wolde it biwreye, or dorste, or sholde conne,
       For al the good that god made under sonne;

       `That rather deye I wolde, and determyne,
380    As thinketh me, now stokked in presoun,
       In wrecchednesse, in filthe, and in vermyne,
       Caytif to cruel king Agamenoun;
       And this, in alle the temples of this toun
       Upon the goddes alle, I wol thee swere,
385    To-morwe day, if that thee lyketh here.

       `And that thou hast so muche y-doon for me,
       That I ne may it never-more deserve,
       This knowe I wel, al mighte I now for thee
       A thousand tymes on a morwen sterve.
390    I can no more, but that I wol thee serve
       Right as thy sclave, whider-so thou wende,
       For ever-more, un-to my lyves ende!

       `But here, with al myn herte, I thee biseche,
       That never in me thou deme swich folye
395    As I shal seyn; me thoughte, by thy speche,
       That this, which thou me dost for companye,
       I sholde wene it were a bauderye;
       I am nought wood, al-if I lewed be;
       It is not so, that woot I wel, pardee.

400    `But he that goth, for gold or for richesse,
       On swich message, calle him what thee list;
       And this that thou dost, calle it gentilesse,
       Compassioun, and felawship, and trist;
       Departe it so, for wyde-where is wist
405    How that there is dyversitee requered
       Bitwixen thinges lyke, as I have lered.

       `And, that thou knowe I thenke nought ne wene
       That this servyse a shame be or Iape,
       I have my faire suster Polixene,
410    Cassandre, Eleyne, or any of the frape;
       Be she never so faire or wel y-shape,
       Tel me, which thou wilt of everichone,
       To han for thyn, and lat me thanne allone.

       `But, sith that thou hast don me this servyse
415    My lyf to save, and for noon hope of mede,
       So, for the love of god, this grete empryse
       Performe it out; for now is moste nede.
       For high and low, with-outen any drede,
       I wol alwey thyne hestes alle kepe;
420    Have now good night, and lat us bothe slepe.'

       Thus held him ech of other wel apayed,
       That al the world ne mighte it bet amende;
       And, on the morwe, whan they were arayed,
       Ech to his owene nedes gan entende.
425    But Troilus, though as the fyr he brende
       For sharp desyr of hope and of plesaunce,
       He not for-gat his gode governaunce.

       But in him-self with manhod gan restreyne
       Ech rakel dede and ech unbrydled chere,
430    That alle tho that liven, sooth to seyne,
       Ne sholde han wist, by word or by manere,
       What that he mente, as touching this matere.
       From every wight as fer as is the cloude
       He was, so wel dissimulen he coude.

435    And al the whyl which that I yow devyse,
       This was his lyf; with al his fulle might,
       By day he was in Martes high servyse,
       This is to seyn, in armes as a knight;
       And for the more part, the longe night
440    He lay, and thoughte how that he mighte serve
       His lady best, hir thank for to deserve.

       Nil I nought swere, al-though he lay softe,
       That in his thought he nas sumwhat disesed,
       Ne that he tornede on his pilwes ofte,
445    And wolde of that him missed han ben sesed;
       But in swich cas men is nought alwey plesed,
       For ought I wot, no more than was he;
       That can I deme of possibilitee.

       But certeyn is, to purpos for to go,
450    That in this whyle, as writen is in geste,
       He say his lady som-tyme; and also
       She with him spak, whan that she dorste or leste,
       And by hir bothe avys, as was the beste,
       Apoynteden ful warly in this nede,
455    So as they dorste, how they wolde procede.

       But it was spoken in so short a wyse,
       In swich awayt alwey, and in swich fere,
       Lest any wyght devynen or devyse
       Wolde of hem two, or to it leye an ere,
460    That al this world so leef to hem ne were
       As that Cupido wolde hem grace sende
       To maken of hir speche aright an ende.

       But thilke litel that they spake or wroughte,
       His wyse goost took ay of al swich hede,
465    It semed hir, he wiste what she thoughte
       With-outen word, so that it was no nede
       To bidde him ought to done, or ought for-bede;
       For which she thought that love, al come it late,
       Of alle Ioye hadde opned hir the yate.

470    And shortly of this proces for to pace,
       So wel his werk and wordes he bisette,
       That he so ful stood in his lady grace,
       That twenty thousand tymes, or she lette,
       She thonked god she ever with him mette;
475    So coude he him governe in swich servyse,
       That al the world ne might it bet devyse.

       For-why she fond him so discreet in al,
       So secret, and of swich obeisaunce,
       That wel she felte he was to hir a wal
480    Of steel, and sheld from every displesaunce;
       That, to ben in his gode governaunce,
       So wys he was, she was no more afered,
       I mene, as fer as oughte ben requered.

       And Pandarus, to quike alwey the fyr,
485    Was evere y-lyke prest and diligent;
       To ese his frend was set al his desyr.
       He shof ay on, he to and fro was sent;
       He lettres bar whan Troilus was absent.
       That never man, as in his freendes nede,
490    Ne bar him bet than he, with-outen drede.

       But now, paraunter, som man wayten wolde
       That every word, or sonde, or look, or chere
       Of Troilus that I rehersen sholde,
       In al this whyle un-to his lady dere;
495    I trowe it were a long thing for to here;
       Or of what wight that stant in swich disioynte,
       His wordes alle, or every look, to poynte.

       For sothe, I have not herd it doon er this,
       In storye noon, ne no man here, I wene;
500    And though I wolde I coude not, y-wis;
       For ther was som epistel hem bitwene,
       That wolde, as seyth myn auctor, wel contene
       Neigh half this book, of which him list not wryte;
       How sholde I thanne a lyne of it endyte?

505    But to the grete effect: than sey I thus,
       That stonding in concord and in quiete,
       Thise ilke two, Criseyde and Troilus,
       As I have told, and in this tyme swete,
       Save only often mighte they not mete,
510    Ne layser have hir speches to fulfelle,
       That it befel right as I shal yow telle.

       That Pandarus, that ever dide his might
       Right for the fyn that I shal speke of here,
       As for to bringe to his hous som night
515    His faire nece, and Troilus y-fere,
       Wher-as at leyser al this heigh matere,
       Touching hir love, were at the fulle up-bounde,
       Hadde out of doute a tyme to it founde.

       For he with greet deliberacioun
520    Hadde every thing that her-to mighte avayle
       Forn-cast, and put in execucioun.
       And neither laft, for cost ne for travayle;
       Come if hem list, hem sholde no-thing fayle;
       And for to been in ought espyed there,
525    That, wiste he wel, an inpossible were.

       Dredelees, it cleer was in the wind
       Of every pye and every lette-game;
       Now al is wel, for al the world is blind
       In this matere, bothe fremed and tame.
530    This timbur is al redy up to frame;
       Us lakketh nought but that we witen wolde
       A certein houre, in which she comen sholde.

       And Troilus, that al this purveyaunce
       Knew at the fulle, and waytede on it ay,
535    Hadde here-up-on eek made gret ordenaunce,
       And founde his cause, and ther-to his aray,
       If that he were missed, night or day,
       Ther-whyle he was aboute this servyse,
       That he was goon to doon his sacrifyse,

540    And moste at swich a temple alone wake,
       Answered of Appollo for to be;
       And first to seen the holy laurer quake,
       Er that Apollo spak out of the tree,
       To telle him next whan Grekes sholden flee,
545    And forthy lette him no man, god forbede,
       But preye Apollo helpen in this nede.

       Now is ther litel more for to doone,
       But Pandare up, and shortly for to seyne,
       Right sone upon the chaunging of the mone,
550    Whan lightles is the world a night or tweyne,
       And that the welken shoop him for to reyne,
       He streight a-morwe un-to his nece wente;
       Ye han wel herd the fyn of his entente.

       Whan he was come, he gan anoon to pleye
555    As he was wont, and of him-self to Iape;
       And fynally, he swor and gan hir seye,
       By this and that, she sholde him not escape,
       Ne lengere doon him after hir to gape;
       But certeynly she moste, by hir leve,
560    Come soupen in his hous with him at eve.

       At whiche she lough, and gan hir faste excuse,
       And seyde, `It rayneth; lo, how sholde I goon?'
       `Lat be,' quod he, `ne stond not thus to muse;
       This moot be doon, ye shal be ther anoon.'
565    So at the laste her-of they felle at oon,
       Or elles, softe he swor hir in hir ere,
       He nolde never come ther she were.

       Sone after this, to him she gan to rowne,
       And asked him if Troilus were there?
570    He swor hir, `Nay, for he was out of towne,'
       And seyde, `Nece, I pose that he were,
       Yow thurfte never have the more fere.
       For rather than men mighte him ther aspye,
       Me were lever a thousand-fold to dye.'

575    Nought list myn auctor fully to declare
       What that she thoughte whan he seyde so,
       That Troilus was out of town y-fare,
       As if he seyde ther-of sooth or no;
       But that, with-outen awayt, with him to go,
580    She graunted him, sith he hir that bisoughte
       And, as his nece, obeyed as hir oughte.

       But nathelees, yet gan she him biseche,
       Al-though with him to goon it was no fere,
       For to be war of goosish peples speche,
585    That dremen thinges whiche that never were,
       And wel avyse him whom he broughte there;
       And seyde him, `Eem, sin I mot on yow triste,
       Loke al be wel, and do now as yow liste.'

       He swor hire, `Yis, by stokkes and by stones,
590    And by the goddes that in hevene dwelle,
       Or elles were him levere, soule and bones,
       With Pluto king as depe been in helle
       As Tantalus!' What sholde I more telle?
       Whan al was wel, he roos and took his leve,
595    And she to souper com, whan it was eve,

       With a certayn of hir owene men,
       And with hir faire nece Antigone,
       And othere of hir wommen nyne or ten;
       But who was glad now, who, as trowe ye,
600    But Troilus, that stood and mighte it see
       Thurgh-out a litel windowe in a stewe,
       Ther he bishet, sin midnight, was in mewe,

       Unwist of every wight but of Pandare?
       But to the poynt; now whan that she was y-come
605    With alle Ioye, and alle frendes fare,
       Hir em anoon in armes hath hir nome,
       And after to the souper, alle and some,
       Whan tyme was, ful softe they hem sette;
       God wot, ther was no deyntee for to fette.

610    And after souper gonnen they to ryse,
       At ese wel, with hertes fresshe and glade,
       And wel was him that coude best devyse
       To lyken hir, or that hir laughen made.
       He song; she pleyde; he tolde tale of Wade.
615    But at the laste, as every thing hath ende,
       She took hir leve, and nedes wolde wende.

       But O, Fortune, executrice of wierdes,
       O influences of thise hevenes hye!
       Soth is, that, under god, ye ben our hierdes,
620    Though to us bestes been the causes wrye.
       This mene I now, for she gan hoomward hye,
       But execut was al bisyde hir leve,
       At the goddes wil, for which she moste bleve.

       The bente mone with hir hornes pale,
625    Saturne, and Iove, in Cancro ioyned were,
       That swich a rayn from hevene gan avale
       That every maner womman that was there
       Hadde of that smoky reyn a verray fere;
       At which Pandare tho lough, and seyde thenne,
630    `Now were it tyme a lady to go henne!

       `But goode nece, if I mighte ever plese
       Yow any-thing, than prey I yow,' quod he,
       `To doon myn herte as now so greet an ese
       As for to dwelle here al this night with me,
635    For-why this is your owene hous, pardee.
       For, by my trouthe, I sey it nought a-game,
       To wende as now, it were to me a shame.'

       Criseyde, which that coude as muche good
       As half a world, tok hede of his preyere;
640    And sin it ron, and al was on a flood,
       She thoughte, as good chep may I dwellen here,
       And graunte it gladly with a freendes chere,
       And have a thank, as grucche and thanne abyde;
       For hoom to goon, it may nought wel bityde.'

645    `I wol,' quod she, `myn uncle leef and dere,
       Sin that yow list, it skile is to be so;
       I am right glad with yow to dwellen here;
       I seyde but a-game, I wolde go.'
       `Y-wis, graunt mercy, nece!' quod he tho;
650    `Were it a game or no, soth for to telle,
       Now am I glad, sin that yow list to dwelle.'

       Thus al is wel; but tho bigan aright
       The newe Ioye, and al the feste agayn;
       But Pandarus, if goodly hadde he might,
655    He wolde han hyed hir to bedde fayn,
       And seyde, `Lord, this is an huge rayn!
       This were a weder for to slepen inne;
       And that I rede us sonE to biginne.

       `And nece, woot ye wher I wol yow leye,
660    For that we shul not liggen fer asonder,
       And for ye neither shullen, dar I seye,
       Heren noise of reynes nor of thondre?
       By god, right in my lyte closet yonder.
       And I wol in that outer hous allone
665    Be wardeyn of your wommen everichone.

       `And in this middel chaumbre that ye see
       Shal youre wommen slepen wel and softe;
       And ther I seyde shal your-selve be;
       And if ye liggen wel to-night, com ofte,
670    And careth not what weder is on-lofte.
       The wyn anon, and whan so that yow leste,
       So go we slepe, I trowe it be the beste.'

       Ther nis no more, but here-after sone,
       The voyde dronke, and travers drawe anon,
675    Gan every wight, that hadde nought to done
       More in the place, out of the chaumber gon.
       And ever-mo so sternelich it ron,
       And blew ther-with so wonderliche loude,
       That wel neigh no man heren other coude.

680    Tho Pandarus, hir eem, right as him oughte,
       With women swiche as were hir most aboute,
       Ful glad un-to hir beddes syde hir broughte,
       And toke his leve, and gan ful lowe loute,
       And seyde, `Here at this closet-dore with-oute,
685    Right over-thwart, your wommen liggen alle,
       That, whom yow list of hem, ye may here calle.'

       So whan that she was in the closet leyd,
       And alle hir wommen forth by ordenaunce
       A-bedde weren, ther as I have seyd,
690    There was no more to skippen nor to traunce,
       But boden go to bedde, with mischaunce,
       If any wight was steringe any-where,
       And late hem slepe that a-bedde were.

       But Pandarus, that wel coude eche a del
695    The olde daunce, and every poynt ther-inne,
       Whan that he sey that alle thing was wel,
       He thoughte he wolde up-on his werk biginne,
       And gan the stewe-dore al softe un-pinne;
       And stille as stoon, with-outen lenger lette,
700    By Troilus a-doun right he him sette.

       And, shortly to the poynt right for to gon,
       Of al this werk he tolde him word and ende,
       And seyde, `Make thee redy right anon,
       For thou shalt in-to hevene blisse wende.'
705    `Now blisful Venus, thou me grace sende,'
       Quod Troilus, `for never yet no nede
       Hadde I er now, ne halvendel the drede.'

       Quod Pandarus, `Ne drede thee never a del,
       For it shal been right as thou wilt desyre;
710    So thryve I, this night shal I make it wel,
       Or casten al the gruwel in the fyre.'
       `Yit blisful Venus, this night thou me enspyre,'
       Quod Troilus, `as wis as I thee serve,
       And ever bet and bet shal, til I sterve.

715    `And if I hadde, O Venus ful of murthe,
       Aspectes badde of Mars or of Saturne,
       Or thou combust or let were in my birthe,
       Thy fader prey al thilke harm disturne
       Of grace, and that I glad ayein may turne,
720    For love of him thou lovedest in the shawe,
       I mene Adoon, that with the boor was slawe.

       `O Iove eek, for the love of faire Europe,
       The whiche in forme of bole awey thou fette;
       Now help, O Mars, thou with thy blody cope,
725    For love of Cipris, thou me nought ne lette;
       O Phebus, thenk whan Dane hir-selven shette
       Under the bark, and laurer wex for drede,
       Yet for hir love, O help now at this nede!

       `Mercurie, for the love of Hierse eke,
730    For which Pallas was with Aglauros wrooth,
       Now help, and eek Diane, I thee biseke
       That this viage be not to thee looth.
       O fatal sustren, which, er any clooth
       Me shapen was, my destene me sponne,
735    So helpeth to this werk that is bi-gonne!'

       Quod Pandarus, `Thou wrecched mouses herte,
       Art thou agast so that she wol thee byte?
       Why, don this furred cloke up-on thy sherte,
       And folowe me, for I wol have the wyte;
740    But byd, and lat me go bifore a lyte.'
       And with that word he gan un-do a trappe,
       And Troilus he broughte in by the lappe.

       The sterne wind so loude gan to route
       That no wight other noyse mighte here;
745    And they that layen at the dore with-oute,
       Ful sykerly they slepten alle y-fere;
       And Pandarus, with a ful sobre chere,
       Goth to the dore anon with-outen lette,
       Ther-as they laye, and softely it shette.

750    And as he com ayeinward prively,
       His nece awook, and asked, `Who goth there?'
       `My dere nece,' quod he, `it am I;
       Ne wondreth not, ne have of it no fere;'
       And ner he com, and seyde hir in hir ere,
755    `No word, for love of god I yow biseche;
       Lat no wight ryse and heren of oure speche.'

       `What! Which wey be ye comen, benedicite?'
       Quod she; `And how thus unwist of hem alle?'
       `Here at this secre trappe-dore,' quod he.
760    Quod tho Criseyde, `Lat me som wight calle.'
       `Ey! God forbede that it sholde falle,'
       Quod Pandarus, `that ye swich foly wroughte!
       They mighte deme thing they never er thoughte!

       `It is nought good a sleping hound to wake,
765    Ne yeve a wight a cause to devyne;
       Your wommen slepen alle, I under-take,
       So that, for hem, the hous men mighte myne;
       And slepen wolen til the sonne shyne.
       And whan my tale al brought is to an ende,
770    Unwist, right as I com, so wol I wende.

       `Now, nece myn, ye shul wel understonde,'
       Quod he, `so as ye wommen demen alle,
       That for to holde in love a man in honde,
       And him hir "leef" and "dere herte" calle,
775    And maken him an howve above a calle,
       I mene, as love an other in this whyle,
       She doth hir-self a shame, and him a gyle.

       `Now wherby that I telle yow al this?
       Ye woot your-self, as wel as any wight,
780    How that your love al fully graunted is
       To Troilus, the worthieste knight,
       Oon of this world, and ther-to trouthe plyght,
       That, but it were on him along, ye nolde
       Him never falsen, whyle ye liven sholde.

785    `Now stant it thus, that sith I fro yow wente,
       This Troilus, right platly for to seyn,
       Is thurgh a goter, by a prive wente,
       In-to my chaumbre come in al this reyn,
       Unwist of every maner wight, certeyn,
790    Save of my-self, as wisly have I Ioye,
       And by that feith I shal Pryam of Troye!

       `And he is come in swich peyne and distresse
       That, but he be al fully wood by this,
       He sodeynly mot falle in-to wodnesse,
795    But-if god helpe; and cause why this is,
       He seyth him told is, of a freend of his,
       How that ye sholde love oon that hatte Horaste,
       For sorwe of which this night shalt been his laste.'

       Criseyde, which that al this wonder herde,
800    Gan sodeynly aboute hir herte colde,
       And with a syk she sorwfully answerde,
       `Allas! I wende, who-so tales tolde,
       My dere herte wolde me not holde
       So lightly fals! Allas! Conceytes wronge,
805    What harm they doon, for now live I to longe!

       `Horaste! Allas! And falsen Troilus?
       I knowe him not, god helpe me so,' quod she;
       `Allas! What wikked spirit tolde him thus?
       Now certes, eem, to-morwe, and I him see,
810    I shal ther-of as ful excusen me
       As ever dide womman, if him lyke';
       And with that word she gan ful sore syke.

       `O god!' quod she, `So worldly selinesse,
       Which clerkes callen fals felicitee,
815    Y-medled is with many a bitternesse!
       Ful anguisshous than is, god woot,' quod she,
       `Condicioun of veyn prosperitee;
       For either Ioyes comen nought y-fere,
       Or elles no wight hath hem alwey here.

820    `O brotel wele of mannes Ioye unstable!
       With what wight so thou be, or how thou pleye,
       Either he woot that thou, Ioye, art muable,
       Or woot it not, it moot ben oon of tweye;
       Now if he woot it not, how may he seye
825    That he hath verray Ioye and selinesse,
       That is of ignoraunce ay in derknesse?

       `Now if he woot that Ioye is transitorie,
       As every Ioye of worldly thing mot flee,
       Than every tyme he that hath in memorie,
830    The drede of lesing maketh him that he
       May in no perfit selinesse be.
       And if to lese his Ioye he set a myte,
       Than semeth it that Ioye is worth ful lyte.

       `Wherfore I wol deffyne in this matere,
835    That trewely, for ought I can espye,
       Ther is no verray wele in this world here.
       But O, thou wikked serpent, Ialousye,
       Thou misbeleved and envious folye,
       Why hastow Troilus me mad untriste,
840    That never yet agilte him, that I wiste?'

       Quod Pandarus, `Thus fallen is this cas.'
       `Why, uncle myn,' quod she, `who tolde him this?
       Why doth my dere herte thus, allas?'
       `Ye woot, ye nece myn,' quod he, `what is;
845    I hope al shal be wel that is amis,
       For ye may quenche al this, if that yow leste,
       And doth right so, for I holde it the beste.'

       `So shal I do to-morwe, y-wis,' quod she,
       `And god to-forn, so that it shal suffyse.'
850    `To-morwe? Allas, that were a fair!' quod he,
       `Nay, nay, it may not stonden in this wyse;
       For, nece myn, thus wryten clerkes wyse,
       That peril is with drecching in y-drawe;
       Nay, swich abodes been nought worth an hawe.

855    `Nece, al thing hath tyme, I dar avowe;
       For whan a chaumber a-fyr is, or an halle,
       Wel more nede is, it sodeynly rescowe
       Than to dispute, and axe amonges alle
       How is this candele in the straw y-falle?
860    A! Benedicite! For al among that fare
       The harm is doon, and fare-wel feldefare!

       `And, nece myn, ne take it not a-greef,
       If that ye suffre him al night in this wo,
       God help me so, ye hadde him never leef,
865    That dar I seyn, now there is but we two;
       But wel I woot, that ye wol not do so;
       Ye been to wys to do so gret folye,
       To putte his lyf al night in Iupertye.

       `Hadde I him never leef? By god, I wene
870    Ye hadde never thing so leef,' quod she.
       `Now by my thrift,' quod he, `that shal be sene;
       For, sin ye make this ensample of me,
       If I al night wolde him in sorwe see
       For al the tresour in the toun of Troye,
875    I bidde god, I never mote have Ioye!

       `Now loke thanne, if ye, that been his love,
       Shul putte al night his lyf in Iupartye
       For thing of nought! Now, by that god above,
       Nought only this delay comth of folye,
880    But of malyce, if that I shal nought lye.
       What, platly, and ye suffre him in distresse,
       Ye neither bountee doon ne gentilesse!'

       Quod tho Criseyde, `Wole ye doon o thing,
       And ye therwith shal stinte al his disese?
885    Have here, and bereth him this blewe ringe,
       For ther is no-thing mighte him bettre plese,
       Save I my-self, ne more his herte apese;
       And sey my dere herte, that his sorwe
       Is causeles, that shal be seen to-morwe.'

890    `A ring?' quod he, `Ye, hasel-wodes shaken!
       Ye nece myn, that ring moste han a stoon
       That mighte dede men alyve maken;
       And swich a ring trowe I that ye have noon.
       Discrecioun out of your heed is goon;
895    That fele I now,' quod he, `and that is routhe;
       O tyme y-lost, wel maystow cursen slouthe!

       `Wot ye not wel that noble and heigh corage
       Ne sorweth not, ne stinteth eek for lyte?
       But if a fool were in a Ialous rage,
900    I nolde setten at his sorwe a myte,
       But feffe him with a fewe wordes whyte
       Another day, whan that I mighte him finde;
       But this thing stant al in another kinde.

       `This is so gentil and so tendre of herte,
905    That with his deeth he wol his sorwes wreke;
       For trusteth wel, how sore that him smerte,
       He wol to yow no Ialouse wordes speke.
       And for-thy, nece, er that his herte breke,
       So spek your-self to him of this matere;
910    For with o word ye may his herte stere.

       `Now have I told what peril he is inne,
       And his coming unwist is to every wight;
       Ne, pardee, harm may ther be noon, ne sinne;
       I wol my-self be with yow al this night.
915    Ye knowe eek how it is your owne knight,
       And that, by right, ye moste upon him triste,
       And I al prest to fecche him whan yow liste.'

       This accident so pitous was to here,
       And eek so lyk a sooth, at pryme face,
920    And Troilus hir knight to hir so dere,
       His prive coming, and the siker place,
       That, though that she dide him as thanne a grace,
       Considered alle thinges as they stode,
       No wonder is, sin she dide al for gode.

925    Cryseyde answerde, `As wisly god at reste
       My sowle bringe, as me is for him wo!
       And eem, y-wis, fayn wolde I doon the beste,
       If that I hadde grace to do so.
       But whether that ye dwelle or for him go,
930    I am, til god me bettre minde sende,
       At dulcarnon, right at my wittes ende.'

       Quod Pandarus, `Ye, nece, wol ye here?
       Dulcarnon called is "fleminge of wrecches";
       It semeth hard, for wrecches wol not lere
935    For verray slouthe or othere wilful tecches;
       This seyd by hem that be not worth two fecches.
       But ye ben wys, and that we han on honde
       Nis neither hard, ne skilful to withstonde.'

       `Thanne, eem,' quod she, `doth her-of as yow list;
940    But er he come, I wil up first aryse;
       And, for the love of god, sin al my trist
       Is on yow two, and ye ben bothe wyse,
       So wircheth now in so discreet a wyse,
       That I honour may have, and he plesaunce;
945    For I am here al in your governaunce.'

       `That is wel seyd,' quod he, `my nece dere'
       Ther good thrift on that wyse gentil herte!
       But liggeth stille, and taketh him right here,
       It nedeth not no ferther for him sterte;
950    And ech of yow ese otheres sorwes smerte,
       For love of god; and, Venus, I the herie;
       For sone hope I we shulle ben alle merie.'

       This Troilus ful sone on knees him sette
       Ful sobrely, right be hir beddes heed,
955    And in his beste wyse his lady grette;
       But lord, so she wex sodeynliche reed!
       Ne, though men sholden smyten of hir heed,
       She coude nought a word a-right out-bringe
       So sodeynly, for his sodeyn cominge.

960    But Pandarus, that so wel coude fele
       In every thing, to pleye anoon bigan,
       And seyde, `Nece, see how this lord can knele!
       Now, for your trouthe, seeth this gentil man!'
       And with that word he for a quisshen ran,
965    And seyde, `Kneleth now, whyl that yow leste,
       Ther god your hertes bringe sone at reste!'

       Can I not seyn, for she bad him not ryse,
       If sorwe it putte out of hir remembraunce,
       Or elles that she toke it in the wyse
970    Of duetee, as for his observaunce;
       But wel finde I she dide him this plesaunce,
       That she him kiste, al-though she syked sore;
       And bad him sitte a-doun with-outen more.

       Quod Pandarus, `Now wol ye wel biginne;
975    Now doth him sitte, gode nece dere,
       Upon your beddes syde al there with-inne,
       That ech of yow the bet may other here.'
       And with that word he drow him to the fere,
       And took a light, and fond his contenaunce,
980    As for to loke up-on an old romaunce.

       Criseyde, that was Troilus lady right,
       And cleer stood on a ground of sikernesse,
       Al thoughte she, hir servaunt and hir knight
       Ne sholde of right non untrouthe in hir gesse,
985    Yet nathelees, considered his distresse,
       And that love is in cause of swich folye,
       Thus to him spak she of his Ialousye:

       `Lo, herte myn, as wolde the excellence
       Of love, ayeins the which that no man may,
990    Ne oughte eek goodly maken resistence
       And eek bycause I felte wel and say
       Youre grete trouthe, and servyse every day;
       And that your herte al myn was, sooth to seyne,
       This droof me for to rewe up-on your peyne.

995    `And your goodnesse have I founde alwey yit,
       Of whiche, my dere herte and al my knight,
       I thonke it yow, as fer as I have wit,
       Al can I nought as muche as it were right;
       And I, emforth my conninge and my might,
1000   Have and ay shal, how sore that me smerte,
       Ben to yow trewe and hool, with a myn herte;

       `And dredelees, that shal be founde at preve. --
       But, herte myn, what al this is to seyne
       Shal wel be told, so that ye noght yow greve,
1005   Though I to yow right on your-self compleyne.
       For ther-with mene I fynally the peyne,
       That halt your herte and myn in hevinesse,
       Fully to sleen, and every wrong redresse.

       `My goode, myn, not I for-why ne how
1010   That Ialousye, allas! That wikked wivere,
       Thus causelees is cropen in-to yow;
       The harm of which I wolde fayn delivere!
       Allas! That he, al hool, or of him slivere,
       Shuld have his refut in so digne a place,
1015   Ther Iove him sone out of your herte arace!

       `But O, thou Iove, O auctor of nature,
       Is this an honour to thy deitee,
       That folk ungiltif suffren here iniure,
       And who that giltif is, al quit goth he?
1020   O were it leful for to pleyne on thee,
       That undeserved suffrest Ialousye,
       Of that I wolde up-on thee pleyne and crye!

       `Eek al my wo is this, that folk now usen
       To seyn right thus, "Ye, Ialousye is love!"
1025   And wolde a busshel venim al excusen,
       For that o greyn of love is on it shove!
       But that wot heighe god that sit above,
       If it be lyker love, or hate, or grame;
       And after that, it oughte bere his name.

1030   `But certeyn is, som maner Ialousye
       Is excusable more than som, y-wis.
       As whan cause is, and som swich fantasye
       With pietee so wel repressed is,
       That it unnethe dooth or seyth amis,
1035   But goodly drinketh up al his distresse;
       And that excuse I, for the gentilesse.

       `And som so ful of furie is and despyt
       That it sourmounteth his repressioun;
       But herte myn, ye be not in that plyt,
1040   That thanke I god, for whiche your passioun
       I wol not calle it but illusioun,
       Of habundaunce of love and bisy cure,
       That dooth your herte this disese endure.

       `Of which I am right sory but not wrooth;
1045   But, for my devoir and your hertes reste,
       Wher-so yow list, by ordal or by ooth,
       By sort, or in what wyse so yow leste,
       For love of god, lat preve it for the beste!
       And if that I be giltif, do me deye,
1050   Allas! What mighte I more doon or seye?'

       With that a fewe brighte teres newe
       Owt of hir eyen fille, and thus she seyde,
       `Now god, thou wost, in thought ne dede untrewe
       To Troilus was never yet Criseyde.'
1055   With that hir heed doun in the bed she leyde,
       And with the shete it wreigh, and syghed sore,
       And held hir pees; not o word spak she more.

       But now help god to quenchen al this sorwe,
       So hope I that he shal, for he best may;
1060   For I have seyn, of a ful misty morwe
       Folwen ful ofte a mery someres day;
       And after winter folweth grene May.
       Men seen alday, and reden eek in stories,
       That after sharpe shoures been victories.

1065   This Troilus, whan he hir wordes herde,
       Have ye no care, him liste not to slepe;
       For it thoughte him no strokes of a yerde
       To here or seen Criseyde, his lady wepe;
       But wel he felte aboute his herte crepe,
1070   For every teer which that Criseyde asterte,
       The crampe of deeth, to streyne him by the herte.

       And in his minde he gan the tyme acurse
       That he cam there, and that that he was born;
       For now is wikke y-turned in-to worse,
1075   And al that labour he hath doon biforn,
       He wende it lost, he thoughte he nas but lorn.
       `O Pandarus,' thoughte he, `allas! Thy wyle
       Serveth of nought, so weylaway the whyle!'

       And therwithal he heng a-doun the heed,
1080   And fil on knees, and sorwfully he sighte;
       What mighte he seyn? He felte he nas but deed,
       For wrooth was she that shulde his sorwes lighte.
       But nathelees, whan that he speken mighte,
       Than seyde he thus, `God woot, that of this game,
1085   Whan al is wist, than am I not to blame!'

       Ther-with the sorwe so his herte shette,
       That from his eyen fil there not a tere,
       And every spirit his vigour in-knette,
       So they astoned or oppressed were.
1090   The feling of his sorwe, or of his fere,
       Or of ought elles, fled was out of towne;
       And doun he fel al sodeynly a-swowne.

       This was no litel sorwe for to see;
       But al was hust, and Pandare up as faste,
1095   `O nece, pees, or we be lost,' quod he,
       `Beth nought agast;' But certeyn, at the laste,
       For this or that, he in-to bedde him caste,
       And seyde, `O theef, is this a mannes herte?'
       And of he rente al to his bare sherte;

1100   And seyde, `Nece, but ye helpe us now,
       Allas, your owne Troilus is lorn!'
       `Y-wis, so wolde I, and I wiste how,
       Ful fayn,' quod she; `Allas! That I was born!'
       `Ye, nece, wole ye pullen out the thorn
1105   That stiketh in his herte?' quod Pandare;
       `Sey "Al foryeve," and stint is al this fare!'

       `Ye, that to me,' quod she, `ful lever were
       Than al the good the sonne aboute gooth';
       And therwith-al she swoor him in his ere,
1110   `Y-wis, my dere herte, I am nought wrooth,
       Have here my trouthe and many another ooth;
       Now speek to me, for it am I, Cryseyde!'
       But al for nought; yet mighte he not a-breyde.

       Therwith his pous and pawmes of his hondes
1115   They gan to frote, and wete his temples tweyne,
       And, to deliveren him from bittre bondes,
       She ofte him kiste; and, shortly for to seyne,
       Him to revoken she dide al hir peyne.
       And at the laste, he gan his breeth to drawe,
1120   And of his swough sone after that adawe,

       And gan bet minde and reson to him take,
       But wonder sore he was abayst, y-wis.
       And with a syk, whan he gan bet a-wake,
       He seyde, `O mercy, god, what thing is this?'
1125   `Why do ye with your-selven thus amis?'
       Quod tho Criseyde, `Is this a mannes game?
       What, Troilus! Wol ye do thus, for shame?'

       And therwith-al hir arm over him she leyde,
       And al foryaf, and ofte tyme him keste.
1130   He thonked hir, and to hir spak, and seyde
       As fil to purpos for his herte reste.
       And she to that answerde him as hir leste;
       And with hir goodly wordes him disporte
       She gan, and ofte his sorwes to comforte.

1135   Quod Pandarus, `For ought I can espyen,
       This light, nor I ne serven here of nought;
       Light is not good for syke folkes yen.
       But for the love of god, sin ye be brought
       In thus good plyt, lat now non hevy thought
1140   Ben hanginge in the hertes of yow tweye:'
       And bar the candele to the chimeneye.

       Sone after this, though it no nede were,
       Whan she swich othes as hir list devyse
       Hadde of him take, hir thoughte tho no fere,
1145   Ne cause eek non, to bidde him thennes ryse.
       Yet lesse thing than othes may suffyse
       In many a cas; for every wight, I gesse,
       That loveth wel meneth but gentilesse.

       But in effect she wolde wite anoon
1150   Of what man, and eek where, and also why
       He Ielous was, sin ther was cause noon;
       And eek the signe, that he took it by,
       She bad him that to telle hir bisily,
       Or elles, certeyn, she bar him on honde,
1155   That this was doon of malis, hir to fonde.

       With-outen more, shortly for to seyne,
       He moste obeye un-to his lady heste;
       And for the lasse harm, he moste feyne.
       He seyde hir, whan she was at swiche a feste,
1160   She mighte on him han loked at the leste;
       Not I not what, al dere y-nough a risshe,
       As he that nedes moste a cause fisshe.

       And she answerde, `Swete, al were it so,
       What harm was that, sin I non yvel mene?
1165   For, by that god that boughte us bothe two,
       In alle thinge is myn entente clene.
       Swich arguments ne been not worth a bene;
       Wol ye the childish Ialous contrefete?
       Now were it worthy that ye were y-bete.'

1170   Tho Troilus gan sorwfully to syke,
       Lest she be wrooth, him thoughte his herte deyde;
       And seyde, `Allas! Up-on my sorwes syke
       Have mercy, swete herte myn, Cryseyde!
       And if that, in tho wordes that I seyde,
1175   Be any wrong, I wol no more trespace;
       Do what yow list, I am al in your grace.'

       And she answerde, `Of gilt misericorde!
       That is to seyn, that I foryeve al this;
       And ever-more on this night yow recorde,
1180   And beth wel war ye do no more amis.'
       `Nay, dere herte myn,' quod he, `y-wis.'
       `And now,' quod she, `that I have do yow smerte,
       Foryeve it me, myn owene swete herte.'

       This Troilus, with blisse of that supprysed,
1185   Put al in goddes hond, as he that mente
       No-thing but wel; and, sodeynly avysed,
       He hir in armes faste to him hente.
       And Pandarus, with a ful good entente,
       Leyde him to slepe, and seyde, `If ye ben wyse,
1190   Swowneth not now, lest more folk aryse.'

       What mighte or may the sely larke seye,
       Whan that the sperhauk hath it in his foot?
       I can no more, but of thise ilke tweye,
       To whom this tale sucre be or soot,
1195   Though that I tarie a yeer, som-tyme I moot,
       After myn auctor, tellen hir gladnesse,
       As wel as I have told hir hevinesse.

       Criseyde, which that felte hir thus y-take,
       As writen clerkes in hir bokes olde,
1200   Right as an aspes leef she gan to quake,
       Whan she him felte hir in his armes folde.
       But Troilus, al hool of cares colde,
       Gan thanken tho the blisful goddes sevene;
       Thus sondry peynes bringen folk in hevene.

1205   This Troilus in armes gan hir streyne,
       And seyde, `O swete, as ever mote I goon,
       Now be ye caught, now is ther but we tweyne;
       Now yeldeth yow, for other boot is noon.'
       To that Criseyde answerde thus anoon,
1210   `Ne hadde I er now, my swete herte dere,
       Ben yolde, y-wis, I were now not here!'

       O! Sooth is seyd, that heled for to be
       As of a fevre or othere greet syknesse,
       Men moste drinke, as men may often see,
1215   Ful bittre drink; and for to han gladnesse,
       Men drinken often peyne and greet distresse;
       I mene it here, as for this aventure,
       That thourgh a peyne hath founden al his cure.

       And now swetnesse semeth more sweet,
1220   That bitternesse assayed was biforn;
       For out of wo in blisse now they flete;
       Non swich they felten, sith they were born;
       Now is this bet, than bothe two be lorn!
       For love of god, take every womman hede
1225   To werken thus, if it comth to the nede.

       Criseyde, al quit from every drede and tene,
       As she that iuste cause hadde him to triste,
       Made him swich feste, it Ioye was to sene,
       Whan she his trouthe and clene entente wiste.
1230   And as aboute a tree, with many a twiste,
       Bitrent and wryth the sote wode-binde,
       Gan eche of hem in armes other winde.

       And as the newe abaysshed nightingale,
       That stinteth first whan she biginneth to singe,
1235   Whan that she hereth any herde tale,
       Or in the hegges any wight steringe,
       And after siker dooth hir voys out-ringe;
       Right so Criseyde, whan hir drede stente,
       Opned hir herte and tolde him hir entente.

1240   And right as he that seeth his deeth y-shapen,
       And deye moot, in ought that he may gesse,
       And sodeynly rescous doth him escapen,
       And from his deeth is brought in sikernesse,
       For al this world, in swich present gladnesse
1245   Was Troilus, and hath his lady swete;
       With worse hap god lat us never mete!

       Hir armes smale, hir streyghte bak and softe,
       Hir sydes longe, fleshly, smothe, and whyte
       He gan to stroke, and good thrift bad ful ofte
1250   Hir snowish throte, hir brestes rounde and lyte;
       Thus in this hevene he gan him to delyte,
       And ther-with-al a thousand tyme hir kiste;
       That, what to done, for Ioye unnethe he wiste.

       Than seyde he thus, `O, Love, O, Charitee,
1255   Thy moder eek, Citherea the swete,
       After thy-self next heried be she,
       Venus mene I, the wel-willy planete;
       And next that, Imeneus, I thee grete;
       For never man was to yow goddes holde
1260   As I, which ye han brought fro cares colde.

       `Benigne Love, thou holy bond of thinges,
       Who-so wol grace, and list thee nought honouren,
       Lo, his desyr wol flee with-outen winges.
       For, noldestow of bountee hem socouren
1265   That serven best and most alwey labouren,
       Yet were al lost, that dar I wel seyn, certes,
       But-if thy grace passed our desertes.

       `And for thou me, that coude leest deserve
       Of hem that nombred been un-to thy grace,
1270   Hast holpen, ther I lykly was to sterve,
       And me bistowed in so heygh a place
       That thilke boundes may no blisse pace,
       I can no more, but laude and reverence
       Be to thy bounte and thyn excellence!'

1275   And therwith-al Criseyde anoon he kiste,
       Of which, certeyn, she felte no disese,
       And thus seyde he, `Now wolde god I wiste,
       Myn herte swete, how I yow mighte plese!
       What man,' quod he, `was ever thus at ese
1280   As I, on whiche the faireste and the beste
       That ever I say, deyneth hir herte reste.

       `Here may men seen that mercy passeth right;
       The experience of that is felt in me,
       That am unworthy to so swete a wight.
1285   But herte myn, of your benignitee,
       So thenketh, though that I unworthy be,
       Yet mot I nede amenden in som wyse,
       Right thourgh the vertu of your heyghe servyse.

       `And for the love of god, my lady dere,
1290   Sin god hath wrought me for I shal yow serve,
       As thus I mene, that ye wol be my stere,
       To do me live, if that yow liste, or sterve,
       So techeth me how that I may deserve
       Your thank, so that I, thurgh myn ignoraunce,
1295   Ne do no-thing that yow be displesaunce.

       `For certes, fresshe wommanliche wyf,
       This dar I seye, that trouthe and diligence,
       That shal ye finden in me al my lyf,
       Ne wol not, certeyn, breken your defence;
1300   And if I do, present or in absence,
       For love of god, lat slee me with the dede,
       If that it lyke un-to your womanhede.'

       `Y-wis,' quod she, `myn owne hertes list,
       My ground of ese, and al myn herte dere,
1305   Graunt mercy, for on that is al my trist;
       But late us falle awey fro this matere;
       For it suffyseth, this that seyd is here.
       And at o word, with-outen repentaunce,
       Wel-come, my knight, my pees, my suffisaunce!'

1310   Of hir delyt, or Ioyes oon the leste
       Were impossible to my wit to seye;
       But iuggeth, ye that han ben at the feste,
       Of swich gladnesse, if that hem liste pleye!
       I can no more, but thus thise ilke tweye
1315   That night, be-twixen dreed and sikernesse,
       Felten in love the grete worthinesse.

       O blisful night, of hem so longe y-sought,
       How blithe un-to hem bothe two thou were!
       Why ne hadde I swich on with my soule y-bought,
1320   Ye, or the leeste Ioye that was there?
       A-wey, thou foule daunger and thou fere,
       And lat hem in this hevene blisse dwelle,
       That is so heygh, that al ne can I telle!

       But sooth is, though I can not tellen al,
1325   As can myn auctor, of his excellence,
       Yet have I seyd, and, god to-forn, I shal
       In every thing al hoolly his sentence.
       And if that I, at loves reverence,
       Have any word in eched for the beste,
1330   Doth therwith-al right as your-selven leste.

       For myne wordes, here and every part,
       I speke hem alle under correccioun
       Of yow, that feling han in loves art,
       And putte it al in your discrecioun
1335   To encrese or maken diminucioun
       Of my langage, and that I yow bi-seche;
       But now to purpos of my rather speche.

       Thise ilke two, that ben in armes laft,
       So looth to hem a-sonder goon it were,
1340   That ech from other wende been biraft,
       Or elles, lo, this was hir moste fere,
       That al this thing but nyce dremes were;
       For which ful ofte ech of hem seyde, `O swete,
       Clippe ich yow thus, or elles I it mete?'

1345   And, lord! So he gan goodly on hir see,
       That never his look ne bleynte from hir face,
       And seyde, `O dere herte, may it be
       That it be sooth, that ye ben in this place?'
       `Ye, herte myn, god thank I of his grace!'
1350   Quod tho Criseyde, and therwith-al him kiste,
       That where his spirit was, for Ioye he niste.

       This Troilus ful ofte hir eyen two
       Gan for to kisse, and seyde, `O eyen clere,
       It were ye that wroughte me swich wo,
1355   Ye humble nettes of my lady dere!
       Though ther be mercy writen in your chere,
       God wot, the text ful hard is, sooth, to finde,
       How coude ye with-outen bond me binde?'

       Therwith he gan hir faste in armes take,
1360   And wel an hundred tymes gan he syke,
       Nought swiche sorwfull sykes as men make
       For wo, or elles whan that folk ben syke,
       But esy sykes, swiche as been to lyke,
       That shewed his affeccioun with-inne;
1365   Of swiche sykes coude he nought bilinne.

       Sone after this they speke of sondry thinges,
       As fil to purpos of this aventure,
       And pleyinge entrechaungeden hir ringes,
       Of which I can nought tellen no scripture;
1370   But wel I woot, a broche, gold and asure,
       In whiche a ruby set was lyk an herte,
       Criseyde him yaf, and stak it on his sherte.

       Lord! trowe ye, a coveitous, a wreccbe,
       That blameth love and holt of it despyt,
1375   That, of tho pens that he can mokre and kecche,
       Was ever yet y-yeve him swich delyt,
       As is in love, in oo poynt, in som plyt?
       Nay, doutelees, for also god me save,
       So parfit Ioye may no nigard have!

1380   They wol sey `Yis,' but lord! So that they lye,
       Tho bisy wrecches, ful of wo and drede!
       They callen love a woodnesse or folye,
       But it shal falle hem as I shal yow rede;
       They shul forgo the whyte and eke the rede,
1385   And live in wo, ther god yeve hem mischaunce,
       And every lover in his trouthe avaunce!

       As wolde god, tho wrecches, that dispyse
       Servyse of love, hadde eres al-so longe
       As hadde Myda, ful of coveityse,
1390   And ther-to dronken hadde as hoot and stronge
       As Crassus dide for his affectis wronge,
       To techen hem that they ben in the vyce,
       And loveres nought, al-though they holde hem nyce!

       Thise ilke two, of whom that I yow seye,
1395   Whan that hir hertes wel assured were,
       Tho gonne they to speken and to pleye,
       And eek rehercen how, and whanne, and where,
       They knewe hem first, and every wo and fere
       That passed was; but al swich hevinesse,
1400   I thanke it god, was tourned to gladnesse.

       And ever-mo, whan that hem fel to speke
       Of any thing of swich a tyme agoon,
       With kissing al that tale sholde breke,
       And fallen in a newe Ioye anoon,
1405   And diden al hir might, sin they were oon,
       For to recoveren blisse and been at ese,
       And passed wo with Ioye countrepeyse.

       Reson wil not that I speke of sleep,
       For it accordeth nought to my matere;
1410   God woot, they toke of that ful litel keep,
       But lest this night, that was to hem so dere,
       Ne sholde in veyn escape in no manere,
       It was biset in Ioye and bisinesse
       Of al that souneth in-to gentilnesse.

1415   But whan the cok, comune astrologer,
       Gan on his brest to bete, and after crowe,
       And Lucifer, the dayes messager,
       Gan for to ryse, and out hir bemes throwe;
       And estward roos, to him that coude it knowe,
1420   Fortuna maior, than anoon Criseyde,
       With herte sore, to Troilus thus seyde: --

       `Myn hertes lyf, my trist and my plesaunce,
       That I was born, allas! What me is wo,
       That day of us mot make desseveraunce!
1425   For tyme it is to ryse, and hennes go,
       Or elles I am lost for evermo!
       O night, allas! Why niltow over us hove,
       As longe as whanne Almena lay by Iove?

       `O blake night, as folk in bokes rede,
1430   That shapen art by god this world to hyde
       At certeyn tymes with thy derke wede,
       That under that men mighte in reste abyde,
       Wel oughte bestes pleyne, and folk thee chyde,
       That there-as day with labour wolde us breste,
1435   That thou thus fleest, and deynest us nought reste!

       `Thou dost, allas! To shortly thyn offyce,
       Thou rakel night, ther god, makere of kinde,
       Thee, for thyn hast and thyn unkinde vyce,
       So faste ay to our hemi-spere binde.
1440   That never-more under the ground thou winde!
       For now, for thou so hyest out of Troye,
       Have I forgon thus hastily my Ioye!'

       This Troilus, that with tho wordes felte,
       As thoughte him tho, for pietous distresse,
1445   The blody teres from his herte melte,
       As he that never yet swich hevinesse
       Assayed hadde, out of so greet gladnesse,
       Gan therwith-al Criseyde his lady dere
       In armes streyne, and seyde in this manere: --

1450   `O cruel day, accusour of the Ioye
       That night and love han stole and faste y-wryen,
       A-cursed be thy coming in-to Troye,
       For every bore hath oon of thy bright yen!
       Envyous day, what list thee so to spyen?
1455   What hastow lost, why sekestow this place,
       Ther god thy lyght so quenche, for his grace?

       `Allas! What han thise loveres thee agilt,
       Dispitous day? Thyn be the pyne of helle!
       For many a lovere hastow shent, and wilt;
1460   Thy pouring in wol no-wher lete hem dwelle.
       What proferestow thy light here for to selle?
       Go selle it hem that smale seles graven,
       We wol thee nought, us nedeth no day haven.'

       And eek the sonne Tytan gan he chyde,
1465   And seyde, `O fool, wel may men thee dispyse,
       That hast the Dawing al night by thy syde,
       And suffrest hir so sone up fro thee ryse,
       For to disesen loveres in this wyse.
       What! Holde your bed ther, thou, and eek thy Morwe!
1470   I bidde god, so yeve yow bothe sorwe!'

       Therwith ful sore he sighte, and thus he seyde,
       `My lady right, and of my wele or wo
       The welle and rote, O goodly myn, Criseyde,
       And shal I ryse, allas! And shal I go?
1475   Now fele I that myn herte moot a-two!
       For how sholde I my lyf an houre save,
       Sin that with yow is al the lyf I have?

       `What shal I doon, for certes, I not how,
       Ne whanne, allas! I shal the tyme see,
1480   That in this plyt I may be eft with yow;
       And of my lyf, god woot, how that shal be,
       Sin that desyr right now so byteth me,
       That I am deed anoon, but I retourne.
       How sholde I longe, allas! Fro yow soiourne?

1485   `But nathelees, myn owene lady bright,
       Yit were it so that I wiste outrely,
       That I, your humble servaunt and your knight,
       Were in your herte set so fermely
       As ye in myn, the which thing, trewely,
1490   Me lever were than thise worldes tweyne,
       Yet sholde I bet enduren al my peyne.'

       To that Cryseyde answerde right anoon,
       And with a syk she seyde, `O herte dere,
       The game, y-wis, so ferforth now is goon,
1495   That first shal Phebus falle fro his spere,
       And every egle been the dowves fere,
       And every roche out of his place sterte,
       Er Troilus out of Criseydes herte!

       `Ye he so depe in-with myn herte grave,
1500   That, though I wolde it turne out of my thought,
       As wisly verray god my soule save,
       To dyen in the peyne, I coude nought!
       And, for the love of god that us bath wrought,
       Lat in your brayn non other fantasye
1505   So crepe, that it cause me to dye!

       `And that ye me wolde han as faste in minde
       As I have yow, that wolde I yow bi-seche;
       And, if I wiste soothly that to finde,
       God mighte not a poynt my Ioyes eche!
1510   But, herte myn, with-oute more speche,
       Beth to me trewe, or elles were it routhe;
       For I am thyn, by god and by my trouthe!

       `Beth glad for-thy, and live in sikernesse;
       Thus seyde I never er this, ne shal to mo;
1515   And if to yow it were a gret gladnesse
       To turne ayein, soone after that ye go,
       As fayn wolde I as ye, it were so,
       As wisly god myn herte bringe at reste!'
       And him in armes took, and ofte keste.

1520   Agayns his wil, sin it mot nedes be,
       This Troilus up roos, and faste him cledde,
       And in his armes took his lady free
       An hundred tyme, and on his wey him spedde,
       And with swich wordes as his herte bledde,
1525   He seyde, `Farewel, mr dere herte swete,
       Ther god us graunte sounde and sone to mete!'

       To which no word for sorwe she answerde,
       So sore gan his parting hir destreyne;
       And Troilus un-to his palays ferde,
1530   As woo bigon as she was, sooth to seyne;
       So hard him wrong of sharp desyr the peyne
       For to ben eft there he was in plesaunce,
       That it may never out of his remembraunce.

       Retorned to his real palais, sone
1535   He softe in-to his bed gan for to slinke,
       To slepe longe, as he was wont to done,
       But al for nought; he may wel ligge and winke,
       But sleep ne may ther in his herte sinke;
       Thenkinge how she, for whom desyr him brende,
1540   A thousand-fold was worth more than he wende.

       And in his thought gan up and doun to winde
       Hir wordes alle, and every countenaunce,
       And fermely impressen in his minde
       The leste poynt that to him was plesaunce;
1545   And verrayliche, of thilke remembraunce,
       Desyr al newe him brende, and lust to brede
       Gan more than erst, and yet took he non hede.

       Criseyde also, right in the same wyse,
       Of Troilus gan in hir herte shette
1550   His worthinesse, his lust, his dedes wyse,
       His gentilesse, and how she with him mette,
       Thonkinge love he so wel hir bisette;
       Desyring eft to have hir herte dere
       In swich a plyt, she dorste make him chere.

1555   Pandare, a-morwe which that comen was
       Un-to his nece, and gan hir fayre grete,
       Seyde, `Al this night so reyned it, allas!
       That al my drede is that ye, nece swete,
       Han litel layser had to slepe and mete;
1560   Al night,' quod he, `hath reyn so do me wake,
       That som of us, I trowe, hir hedes ake.'

       And ner he com, and seyde, `How stont it now
       This mery morwe, nece, how can ye fare?'
       Criseyde answerde, `Never the bet for yow,
1565   Fox that ye been, god yeve youre herte care!
       God help me so, ye caused al this fare,
       Trow I,' quod she, `for alle your wordes whyte;
       O! Who-so seeth yow knoweth yow ful lyte!'

       With that she gan hir face for to wrye
1570   With the shete, and wex for shame al reed;
       And Pandarus gan under for to prye,
       And seyde, `Nece, if that I shal be deed,
       Have here a swerd, and smyteth of myn heed.'
       With that his arm al sodeynly he thriste
1575   Under hir nekke, and at the laste hir kiste.

       I passe al that which chargeth nought to seye,
       What! God foryaf his deeth, and she al-so
       Foryaf, and with hir uncle gan to pleye,
       For other cause was ther noon than so.
1580   But of this thing right to the effect to go,
       Whan tyme was, hom til hir hous she wente,
       And Pandarus hath fully his entente.

       Now torne we ayein to Troilus,
       That resteles ful longe a-bedde lay,
1585   And prevely sente after Pandarus,
       To him to come in al the haste he may.
       He com anoon, nought ones seyde he `nay,'
       And Troilus ful sobrely he grette,
       And doun upon his beddes syde him sette.

1590   This Troilus, with al the affeccioun
       Of frendes love that herte may devyse,
       To Pandarus on knees fil adoun,
       And er that he wolde of the place aryse,
       He gan him thonken in his beste wyse;
1595   An hondred sythe he gan the tyme blesse,
       That he was born, to bringe him fro distresse.

       He seyde, `O frend of frendes the alderbeste
       That ever was, the sothe for to telle,
       Thou hast in hevene y-brought my soule at reste
1600   Fro Flegitoun, the fery flood of helle;
       That, though I mighte a thousand tymes selle,
       Upon a day, my lyf in thy servyse,
       It mighte nought a mote in that suffyse.

       `The sonne, which that al the world may see,
1605   Saw never yet, my lyf, that dar I leye,
       So inly fayr and goodly as is she,
       Whos I am al, and shal, til that I deye;
       And, that I thus am hires, dar I seye,
       That thanked be the heighe worthinesse
1610   Of love, and eek thy kinde bisinesse.

       `Thus hastow me no litel thing y-yive,
       Fo which to thee obliged be for ay
       My lyf, and why? For thorugh thyn help I live;
       For elles deed hadde I be many a day.'
1615   And with that word doun in his bed he lay,
       And Pandarus ful sobrely him herde
       Til al was seyd, and than he thus answerde:

       `My dere frend, if I have doon for thee
       In any cas, god wot, it is me leef;
1620   And am as glad as man may of it be,
       God help me so; but tak now a-greef
       That I shal seyn, be war of this myscheef,
       That, there-as thou now brought art in-to blisse,
       That thou thy-self ne cause it nought to misse.

1625   `For of fortunes sharpe adversitee
       The worst kinde of infortune is this,
       A man to have ben in prosperitee,
       And it remembren, whan it passed is.
       Thou art wys y-nough, for-thy do nought amis;
       Be not to rakel, though thou sitte warme,
1631   For if thou be, certeyn, it wol thee harme.

       `Thou art at ese, and holde the wel ther-inne.
       For also seur as reed is every fyr,
       As greet a craft is kepe wel as winne;
1635   Brydle alwey wel thy speche and thy desyr,
       For worldly Ioye halt not but by a wyr;
       That preveth wel, it brest alday so ofte;
       For-thy nede is to werke with it softe.'

       Quod Troilus, `I hope, and god to-forn,
1640   My dere frend, that I shal so me bere,
       That in my gilt ther shal no thing be lorn,
       Ne I nil not rakle as for to greven here;
       It nedeth not this matere ofte tere;
       For wistestow myn herte wel, Pandare,
1645   God woot, of this thou woldest litel care.'

       Tho gan he telle him of his glade night,
       And wher-of first his herte dredde, and how,
       And seyde, `Freend, as I am trewe knight,
       And by that feyth I shal to god and yow,
1650   I hadde it never half so hote as now;
       And ay the more that desyr me byteth
       To love hir best, the more it me delyteth.

       `I noot my-self not wisly what it is;
       But now I fele a newe qualitee,
1655   Ye, al another than I dide er this.'
       Pandare answerde, and seyde thus, that he
       That ones may in hevene blisse be,
       He feleth other weyes, dar I leye,
       Than thilke tyme he first herde of it seye.

1660   This is o word for al: this Troilus
       Was never ful to speke of this matere,
       And for to preysen un-to Pandarus
       The bountee of his righte lady dere,
       And Pandarus to thanke and maken chere.
1665   This tale ay was span-newe to biginne,
       Til that the night departed hem a-twinne.

       Sone after this, for that fortune it wolde,
       I-comen was the blisful tyme swete,
       That Troilus was warned that he sholde,
1670   Ther he was erst, Criseyde his lady mete;
       For which he felte his herte in Ioye flete;
       And feythfully gan alle the goddes herie;
       And lat see now if that he can be merie.

       And holden was the forme and al the wyse,
1675   Of hir cominge, and eek of his also,
       As it was erst, which nedeth nought devyse.
       But playnly to the effect right for to go,
       In Ioye and suerte Pandarus hem two
       A-bedde broughte, whan that hem bothe leste,
1680   And thus they ben in quiete and in reste.

       Nought nedeth it to yow, sin they ben met,
       To aske at me if that they blythe were;
       For if it erst was wel, tho was it bet
       A thousand-fold, this nedeth not enquere.
1685   A-gon was every sorwe and every fere;
       And bothe, y-wis, they hadde, and so they wende,
       As muche Ioye as herte may comprende.

       This is no litel thing of for to seye,
       This passeth every wit for to devyse;
1690   For eche of hem gan otheres lust obeye;
       Felicitee, which that thise clerkes wyse
       Commenden so, ne may not here suffyse.
       This Ioye may not writen been with inke,
       This passeth al that herte may bithinke.

1695   But cruel day, so wel-awey the stounde!
       Gan for to aproche, as they by signes knewe,
       For whiche hem thoughte felen dethes wounde;
       So wo was hem, that changen gan hir hewe,
       And day they goonnen to dispyse al newe,
1700   Calling it traytour, envyous, and worse,
       And bitterly the dayes light they curse.

       Quod Troilus, `Allas! Now am I war
       That Pirous and tho swifte stedes three,
       Whiche that drawen forth the sonnes char,
1705   Han goon som by-path in despyt of me;
       That maketh it so sone day to be;
       And, for the sonne him hasteth thus to ryse,
       Ne shal I never doon him sacrifyse!'

       But nedes day departe moste hem sone,
1710   And whanne hir speche doon was and hir chere,
       They twinne anoon as they were wont to done,
       And setten tyme of meting eft y-fere;
       And many a night they wroughte in this manere.
       And thus Fortune a tyme ladde in Ioye
1715   Criseyde, and eek this kinges sone of Troye.

       In suffisaunce, in blisse, and in singinges,
       This Troilus gan al his lyf to lede;
       He spendeth, Iusteth, maketh festeynges;
       He yeveth frely ofte, and chaungeth wede,
1720   And held aboute him alwey, out of drede,
       A world of folk, as cam him wel of kinde,
       The fressheste and the beste he coude fynde;

       That swich a voys was of hym and a stevene
       Thorugh-out the world, of honour and largesse,
1725   That it up rong un-to the yate of hevene.
       And, as in love, he was in swich gladnesse,
       That in his herte he demede, as I gesse,
       That there nis lovere in this world at ese
       So wel as he, and thus gan love him plese.

1730   The godlihede or beautee which that kinde
       In any other lady hadde y-set
       Can not the mountaunce of a knot unbinde,
       A-boute his herte, of al Criseydes net.
       He was so narwe y-masked and y-knet,
1735   That it undon on any manere syde,
       That nil not been, for ought that may betyde.

       And by the hond ful ofte he wolde take
       This Pandarus, and in-to gardin lede,
       And swich a feste and swich a proces make
1740   Him of Criseyde, and of hir womanhede,
       And of hir beautee, that, with-outen drede,
       It was an hevene his wordes for to here;
       And thanne he wolde singe in this manere.

       `Love, that of erthe and see hath governaunce,
1745   Love, that his hestes hath in hevene hye,
       Love, that with an holsom alliaunce
       Halt peples ioyned, as him list hem gye,
       Love, that knetteth lawe of companye,
       And couples doth in vertu for to dwelle,
1750   Bind this acord, that I have told and telle;

       `That that the world with feyth, which that is stable,
       Dyverseth so his stoundes concordinge,
       That elements that been so discordable
       Holden a bond perpetuely duringe,
1755   That Phebus mote his rosy day forth bringe,
       And that the mone hath lordship over the nightes,
       Al this doth Love; ay heried be his mightes!

       `That, that the see, that gredy is to flowen,
       Constreyneth to a certeyn ende so
1760   His flodes, that so fersly they ne growen
       To drenchen erthe and al for ever-mo;
       And if that Love ought lete his brydel go,
       Al that now loveth a-sonder sholde lepe,
       And lost were al, that Love halt now to-hepe.

1765   `So wolde god, that auctor is of kinde,
       That, with his bond, Love of his vertu liste
       To cerclen hertes alle, and faste binde,
       That from his bond no wight the wey out wiste.
       And hertes colde, hem wolde I that he twiste
1770   To make hem love, and that hem leste ay rewe
       On hertes sore, and kepe hem that ben trewe.'

       In alle nedes, for the tounes werre,
       He was, and ay the firste in armes dight;
       And certeynly, but-if that bokes erre,
1775   Save Ector, most y-drad of any wight;
       And this encrees of hardinesse and might
       Cam him of love, his ladies thank to winne,
       That altered his spirit so with-inne.

       In tyme of trewe, on haukinge wolde he ryde,
1780   Or elles hunten boor, bere, or lyoun;
       The smale bestes leet he gon bi-syde.
       And whan that he com rydinge in-to toun,
       Ful ofte his lady, from hir window doun,
       As fresh as faucon comen out of muwe,
1785   Ful redy was, him goodly to saluwe.

       And most of love and vertu was his speche,
       And in despyt hadde alle wrecchednesse;
       And doutelees, no nede was him biseche
       To honouren hem that hadde worthinesse,
1790   And esen hem that weren in distresse.
       And glad was he if any wight wel ferde,
       That lover was, whan he it wiste or herde.

       For sooth to seyn, he lost held every wight
       But-if he were in loves heigh servyse,
1795   I mene folk that oughte it been of right.
       And over al this, so wel coude he devyse
       Of sentement, and in so unkouth wyse
       Al his array, that every lover thoughte,
       That al was wel, what-so he seyde or wroughte.

1800   And though that he be come of blood royal,
       Him liste of pryde at no wight for to chase;
       Benigne he was to ech in general,
       For which he gat him thank in every place.
       Thus wolde love, y-heried be his grace,
1805   That Pryde, Envye, Ire, and Avaryce
       He gan to flee, and every other vyce.

       Thou lady bright, the doughter to Dione,
       Thy blinde and winged sone eek, daun Cupyde;
       Ye sustren nyne eek, that by Elicone
1810   In hil Parnaso listen for to abyde,
       That ye thus fer han deyned me to gyde,
       I can no more, but sin that ye wol wende,
       Ye heried been for ay, with-outen ende!

       Thourgh yow have I seyd fully in my song
1815   Theffect and Ioye of Troilus servyse,
       Al be that ther was som disese among,
       As to myn auctor listeth to devyse.
       My thridde book now ende ich in this wyse;
       And Troilus in luste and in quiete
1820   Is with Criseyde, his owne herte swete.

Explicit Liber Tercius.

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